Preparing to Quit Tobacco

The most important part of quitting smoking/tobacco is commitment. Research shows that people who are committed are more successful at quitting.

What is commitment? Commitment is a decision that, no matter what happens, you will not pick up another tobacco product. It is a promise you make to yourself and to others. When you make a commitment, you are making a firm decision to stop for good.

P.L.A.N. Your Quit

It is important to plan your quit attempt.

P – Pick a Quit Day.

L – Let friends, family and coworkers know you plan to quit.

A – Anticipate your triggers, and use the "A" strategies to cope.

N – Nicotine addiction medication – Talk to your doctor about options.

P – Pick a Quit Day.

Choose a day that you will stop using tobacco. This is your "Quit Day"! It is important to set a day and prepare for it. Find a day that is not too stressful. Think about a day that may have some meaning to you.

Here are some ideas:
  • A birthday. Your birthday reminds you that you are doing this for your life.
  • A child's, grandchild's or family member's birthday. This reminds you that you are quitting for your family.
  • An anniversary. This reminds you that you want to be healthy for your loved ones.
  • A vacation. Consider quitting on vacation when you will have little stress.
  • A holiday. Perhaps New Years Day, Independence Day (July 4) or The Great American Smokeout (the third Thursday of each November).

You might also choose a typical day, such as the first of the month. That is good, too. When you are ready to make the change, the actual day is not as important as how well you prepare for it.

L – Let family, friends, and coworkers know you plan to quit.
A – Anticipate your triggers, and use the "A" strategies to cope.
N – Nicotine/Quit Medication: Talk to your doctor about nicotine medications.



Fiore, M.C., Jaen, C.R., Baker, T.B., et al., Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence: 2008 Update. Clinical Practice Guideline. Rockville, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services. Public Health Service. May, 2008.

Abrama, D.B., Niaura, R., Brown, R. A., Emmons, K.M., Goldstein, M.G., & Monti, P.M. (2003) The Tobacco Dependence Treatment Handbook: A Guide to Best Practices. Guilford Press. New York, NY.


This information has been approved by Amy Lukowski, PsyD (August 2015).

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